Feel free to pass your comments, feedback, advices or recipe requests / suggestions through comments of this blog or email to illatharasi@gmail.com. All your suggestions are welcome!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Egg Pie / Tart

My first experiment on PIE's :) in an Oven Toaster. I just followed Ivy's Pie/Tart's recipe. Except I used small muffins plates to do it.
Made the filling as below:

Boiled eggs - 3
Onions - 1 big sized, finely chopped
French beans - 5-6, finely chopped
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tablespoon
Fennel seeds - 1/2 teaspoon, powdered coarsely
Coriander leaves - few chopped
Salt to taste
Oil - 1 tablespoon

Heat oil in a pan. Add onions and saute until they are golden brown.

Add ginger garlic paste, fennel seeds, beans, salt to taste and fry until beans are cooked.

Garnish with coriander leaves and mix well.

Keep a spoonful of this filling into the pie shell with half of boiled egg.

Bake for 10 minutes and serve hot.

I used oven toaster so it was not perfect, but tasted good. So try this out in proper oven and enjoy!

Sending this Egg Pie Recipe to Ivy's Savoury Pie Event

and the picture to Jugalbandi's Click of the month - Crusts Event

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Yoghurt Pomo Salad

Wanted to participate in Calcium Rich Event hosted by Sangeeth.

I checked for the Calcium rich food and found that Yoghurt is the best source of calcium. Check out more information here. So presenting this salad with a little twist for the event........

Low fat Yoghurt (curd) - 2 cups
Honey - 1-2 tablespoons
Pomogranate - 1/2 cup
Milk - little (if it is too thick), optional

Blend yoghurt with honey.

Add pomogranate to it. Mix well.

Refrigerate for an hour and serve chilled.
Can be had as a dessert too.

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Serves 2 persons.

Also sending this recipe to EC's WYF - "Salad/Starters/Soups" Event

And Divya's Diet Foods Event :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Adai, Aviyal & Pookolam

My friend Priyanka is hosting Festive Food Event - Onam this month.

Onam is the state festival of Kerala, South India. It is celebrated in honour of
Mahabali, the mythical Asura king of ancient Kerala. This harvest festival falls in August / September.

For more information on Onam festival, please
click here.

As promised her, I am submitting the recipe with the PooKolam too;) Pookolam are designs or decorations made with flowers and lamps in front of the houses to invite God. This is my first attempt to it. I couldn't get much flowers, so did it with Orchids and Marigolds. So have a look of it......

I never celebrated Onam, so tried to submit any dish from Kerala cuisine. Here is the famous Aviyal, which is the main dish in the Onam festival meal.

Vegetables - 2 cups (Mix of carrots, drumsticks(moringa), pumpkin, snakegourd, bottlegourd, radish, raw bananas, beans, yam, etc - I used carrots, yam, beans, snake gourd, bottlegourd - cut into 2 inch long)
Small onions - 4-5
Grated coconut - 1 cup
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Yoghurt (curd) - 1/2 cup
Green chillies - 4
Curry leaves - few
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon (optional)
Turmeric powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Coconut oil or any oil - 1 tablespoon

Cook vegetables, 2 green chillies, turmeric powder in 1-2 cups of water, until they are soft.

Meanwhile, grind coconut, small onions, 2 chillies, cumin seeds to a fine paste with little water and keep aside.

Once veggies are cooked, add this paste, yoghurt, salt to taste and mix well.

Add water if the gravy is too thick. Put off the flame when it is about to boil.

Heat oil in a small pan and allow mustard seeds to splitter in it. Add curry leaves, fry for a minute and add this to the aviyal.

Aviyal can be had with rice or Paruppu Adai(Kind of pancake made with pulses or grains).

One more look with Adai:

Click here for Adai recipe.

Cooking time - 30 minutes
Serves 2-3 persons

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Luffa(Peerkankai) Skin & Vadagam Chutney(Thuvayal)

I had this chutney with rice at my friend, Rev's house. It was so yummy and I had to buy the "Curry Vadam" from shop to make this.

Very good for lunch boxes and can be refrigerated for a week and used.

Luffa (Peerkankai or Ridge Gourd) Skin - 2 cups
Vadagam (see below for more details) - 1/2 cup
Tamarind - a small lemon sized
Red chillies - 6-8 (or as spicy required)
Salt to taste
Coconut - 1/4 cup
Oil - 1/2 tablespoon

For tempering:
Oil - 1/2 tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Curry leaves - few
Red chillies - 2, split into halves

Wash luffa skin and saute them with red chillies in oil, until its turns pale brown. Fry vadagam seperately in few drops of oil and keep aside.

Grind luffa skin, chillies, vadagam, coconut, tamarind, salt to a fine paste. Sprinkle little water if required.

Temper(Add mustard seeds to hot oil, allow it splitter. Then add curry leaves, red chillies, fry for 2 mintues) it with the ingredients mentioned above.

Serve hot with rice. This can be refrigerated for a week and used.

Cooking time - 20 minutes
Serves 5-6 persons

About Vadagam

Picture of vadagam I bought .......

Vadagam is a must in most of the South Indian homes. It is usually used for curries(Kozhambhu). It will have very good flavour and taste, if used. I have never prepared it but might try in future.

Presenting the recipe of it from Harushi.com.

Small onions - 3kg
Garlic - 1/2 kg
Mustard seeds - 200gms
Fenugreek seeds - 100gms
Split black gram - 250gms
Cumin seeds - 250grams
Salt especially crystalsalt - 2 handfull
Turmeric powder - 2tbls
Castor oil - 200ml

Onion and garlic are peeled and chopped finely. Add all the other ingredients (except castor oil) with it. These combined ingredients are smashed or grinded coarsely in ural lightly. But it's hard to go for ural these days. So try to crush them with a hammer (or something of that sort) lightly so that they can be molded into balls.

Take care not to crush them heavily then the juice will ooze out. Make the balls and place them all in a plate. Dry them in hot sun. In the evening, break all of them, add half of the castor oil, mix well and make balls again. In the morning, place them on the plate and again let it dry on the heat of the sun. Again in the evening do the same process using the other half portion of the castor oil.

These balls must be dried in the hot sun for 6 or 7 days until they are well dried. You can keep them for a couple of years.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Badam (Almonds) Halwa

Almonds are excellent source of vitamin E and magnesium, and a good source of fiber and phosphorous. It also have monounsaturated fat, proteins, potassium, calcium and iron.

Overnight almond soaked water, can be had on empty stomach, in early mornings, which is too healthy.

For the past 2-3 weeks, I saw Badam halwa in many of the foodie blogs, it tempted me to try it out. So here goes my recipe.......

Almonds - 1 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup (or as required)
Milk - 1/4 cup
Cardamom powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Saffron - few, soaked in 1-2 tablespoons of hot milk
Ghee - As required

Wash and soak almonds in 2-3 cups of water, overnight.

Drain the water{Use soaked water as mentioned above} and grind to a fine paste with milk.

Heat 1 cup of water and sugar in a non-stick pan. When it begins to boil, add almonds paste and keep stirring for 10-15 minutes.

Add cardamom powder, saffron milk and mix well. Keep stirring until almonds are cooked and it becomes thick.

Once it is thick, add ghee and mix well. Serve it hot!

Garnish with any nuts or dry fruits. I used saffron powder.

One more closer look to tempt you all ;) ..... he he .....

Cooking time - 45 minutes
Serves 2-3 persons

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Masala More(Buttermilk)

Very good to have this, after you return to home, on a Sunny day! Gives more energy to the body, as it releases lot of sweat!

Buttermilk - 2 cups
Green chilli - 1
Ginger - 1/2 inch small piece
Coriander leaves - few
Curry leaves - few, finely chopped
Salt to taste

Grind green chilli, ginger and coriander leaves to a fine paste.

Add buttermilk, salt to it and blend it nicely.

Garnish with chopped curry leaves and serve it cold.

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Makes 1 glass.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Karunai Kizhanghu Podimas (Yam Stir Fry)

Try this, a real yummy one. Will be divine with curd rice ;)

Karunai Kizhangu (Yam) - 250 grams
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Black gram (Urad Dal / Uzhunthu) - 1 teaspoon
Cury leaves - few
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Asafoetida powder (Perungayam) - 1/4 teaspoon
Chilli powder - 2 teaspoons or as spicy required
Coriander powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Lemon juice or Tamarind juice - 1/2 tablespoon
Salt to taste
Oil - 1/2 tablespoons

Method :
Wash yam, peel off the skin and cut into small cubes. The more tiny you cut, more tasty yam would be ;)

Heat oil in a pan and allow mustard seeds to splitter in it.

Add curry leaves, black gram, asafoetida powder, yam and fry them.

Stir constantly and add turmeric powder, chilli powder, coriander powder and mix them well.

Let it cook for 15 minutes, but keep stirring often.

Then add salt, lemon juice and saute it until they are cooked well.

Serve hot with rice.

Cooking time : 25 minutes
Serves 2 persons

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Tomato Rice

Every south indian cook knew about this I guess ;)

Very simple, quick and tasty recipe.

Best for lunch boxes and travel.

Cooked Rice - 3-4 cups
Ripe Tomatoes - 2, medium sized, finely chopped
Onions - 1, medium sized, finely chopped
Chilli powder - 1/2 tablespoon or as spicy required
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Turmeric powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Garlic paste - 1 tablespoon
Curry leaves - few
Coriander leaves - few
Salt to taste
Oil/Ghee - 1-2 tablespoons

Heat oil/ghee in a big pan. Once it is hot, allow mustard seeds to splitter in it.

Add curry leaves, onions and fry until they are golden brown. Then add garlic paste and fry until the raw smell goes off.

Then add chopped tomatoes and saute well. Add chilli powder, turmeric powder and mix well.

Keep stirring in intervals until tomatoes become soft. Add salt to taste and cook until it become thick.

Add cooked rice, salt(if required) and stir carefully, so that all gets mixed well.

Cook it covered in a low flame for 5-10 minutes.
Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with coconut chutney or pappad.

Cooking time : 20 minutes
Serves 2 persons.

Srilekha, Vidhya, Priti have passed me "GOOD JOB" award.

Thank you friends!
I would like to share it with all my blogger friends who are doing a great job :)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Vinayaga Chathurthi Celebrations - Kozhukattai & Vada

Vinayaga Chathurthi was very special this time, since my nephew was there with me. We dressed him up and was having lots of fun. He left to India last friday and I am missing him badly :(

Anyway....... this is my new Ganesha we bought this year.

And here goes my offerings ....... Salt Kozhukattai, Sweet Kozhukattai and Vada

Kozhukattai(Steamed Rice balls) - Sweet & Salt

Rice flour - 2 cups
Salt to taste
Butter/Ghee - 1 tablespoon

Mix all ingredients in little warm water and make a thick dough.

Make into 2 parts and keep it aside for 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare for the fillings, as below:

For salt Kozhukattai:
Oil/Ghee - 1 tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Split chickpeas (Kadalai paruppu/channa dal) - 1 tablespoon
Coconut - 2 tablespoons (Grated or coconut cut into tiny pieces)

Heat oil/ghee in a little pan. Once it is hot, allow mustard seeds to splitter in it.

Add channa dal, coconut and fry until they are golden brown.

Then add this to one part of the dough and mix well.

Take small amount of the dough and press it with your hands(as in the picture above) and keep aside.

For sweet Kozhukattai:
Ghee - 1 tablespoon
Grated coconut - 3 tablespoons
Jaggery(powdered) - 1/4 cup

Heat ghee in a pan. Fry coconut in it, until it becomes dry.

Allow it to cool completely. Once it comes to room temperature, add powdered jaggery and mix well.

Make small balls out of the other part of the dough. Flatten the dough, keep the filling and make into small balls.

Prepare balls out of the dough and keep aside.

Steam the salt and sweet balls for 10-15 minutes.

Tasty Kozhukattais are ready!

Cooking time : 30 minutes
Serves 5-6 persons


Uzhunthu Vadai

Black gram (Urad Dal / Uzhunthu) - 1 cup
Onion - 1, finely chopped
Green chillies - 2-3 or as spicy required
Coriander leaves - few
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Soak the dal for 1-2 hours in 3 cups of water.

Grind dal, chillies, salt to a thick dough. Just sprinkle water if required.

Add onions, coriander leaves to it and mix well. Keep it aside for 15-20 minutes.

Heat oil in a pan. Once it is hot, add small balls of the dough and fry until golden brown.

Tasty vadas are ready!

Cooking time : 30 minutes
Serves 5-6 persons

I am sending these entries to Purva Daawat's Ganesh Chathuthi Celebrations Festive Food Event.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Cocka-doodle-do.... Chicken Parade;)

I was thinking what to post today..... {main thing I was feeling lazy to type ;) }

Then saw
Srilekha's Chicken Event

..... so reposting my Chicken dishes......

1) Chicken Gravy - Gravy

2) Chettinad Chicken Curry - Curry

3) Chicken Kurma - Curry

4) Chettinadu Kozhi(Chicken) Rasam - Soup

5) Pepper Chicken (Kozhambhu)Curry - Curry

6) Chicken Soup (Microwave Cooking) - Soup

7) Chicken Fry - Sidedish

8) Chicken Biriyani with Onion Raitha - Main Course

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Podi Onion Dosa

Dosa and Idli podi(powder) are traditional recipes of Tamilnadu cuisine. This is a must or mostly had for breakfast in South India. There are various types of Dosa. Can change the veggies and add flavour of our choice.


For Dosa batter:
Boiled Rice - 3 cups
Urad dal - 1 cups
Fenugreek seeds - 1 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Ghee/Oil - few drops

For Podi:
Urad dal - 1/4 cup
Split peas(Kadalai paruppu/Channa dal) - 1/4 cup
Fried split peas(Pottukadalai) - 1 tablespoon
Lentils (Tur dal) - 2 tablespoons
Sesame seeds - 1/2 tablespoon (optional)
Red Chillies - 6-7 pr as spicy required
Salt to taste

For Garnishing:
Onion - 1, finely chopped
Green chillies - 2-3 or as spicy required
Coriander leaves - few, chopped

Soak rice in water, dal for 2-3 hours.

Grind them seperately and mix them with salt and water.

Ferment it for 8 hours or leave the dough overnite, so that it is perfect for the mornings.

Dry roast all the ingredients of Idli podi except salt and fried split peas. Grind all the ingredients to a coarse powder.

Heat flat pan, apply oil/ghee to it. Using a laddle apply batter and spread it like a pancake.

Sprinkle finely chopped onions, green chillies, coriander leaves, "podi" and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Flip dosa and cook the other side of it.

Serve it hot.

Cooking time : 10 minutes

Friday, September 5, 2008

Awards, Poem, Meme and GREEN PARADE

Bhawana and Vidhya, have given me this beautiful "A PERFECT BLEND OF FRIENDSHIP AWARD" .......

Thank you so much Bhawana and Vidhya, you both have made my day, Hug you friends!!!

Purpose of the Friendship Award
To send love and acknowledgment to men and women, who brighten your day, teach you new things and live their lives fully with generosity and joy. It's been a blessing and an inspiration to meet all of you through your wonderful blogs.

I would love to pass this to all my blogger friends. Since it has to be linked, I have mentioned few. Hope they would pass this to others who have not received it :)

Tom Aarons

Enjoy friends!!!

Bhawana also passed me "Wlyde Woman Award" and the beautiful FRIENDSHIP poem.....

Why Do We Need Friends?

We need friends for many reasons, all throughout the season.
We need friends to comfort uswhen we are sad,
and to have fun with us when we are glad.

We need friends to give us good advice,
We need someone we can count on,
and treat us nice.

We need friends to remember us
one we have passed sharing memories that will always last.

Spread the poem of friendship......

I would like to spread it to all my FRIENDS who visit me everyday!!!!


I have been tagged by few of my friends. Since, I was busy with my brother and co., wasn't able to post it earlier. So here is my MEME:

Tom Aarons, Bhawana and Vidhya, have tagged me, for the MEME: "Facts about me".

The rules of the meme are:

(a) List these rules on your blog.
(b) Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog.
(c) Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.

7 Facts about me...
1. From : Native of Chennai, India, presently staying in Singapore for the past 3 years.
2. Studies : Physics graduate and Masters in Public Administration & Computer Applications.
3. Career : Have 9+ years of IT experience and currently a full time home maker.
4. Hobbies : Like to do creative things, Surfing, Blogging, Music, Reading.
5. Friends : Have so many.... Love them all..... Life is EMPTY without them.
6. Favourites : Lavender colour, Jasmine smell, Raw mangoes with salt and chilli powder ;), Ice Lemon tea, Crunchy bites from KFC ;), Love to explore new places, and many more.... whatever came to my mind, I have mentioned.
7. Nature : Trustworthy, Friendly, Get tensed up soon;).

Love to bug .... he he ;)


Enjoy Gals :)


Reposting my previous GREEN entries for the Food in Colours : GREEN - A Colourful Event hosted by Sunshinemom.

1. Bottlegourd (Peeled Skin) Chutney

2. Baby Kailan Stir Fry (Indian Style)

3. Drumstick leaves(Moringa leaves/Murungai Keerai) poriyal

4. French Beans Poriyal

5. Tindora(Kovakkai) fry

6. Snakegourd Fry (Pudalangai Poriyal)

7. Gongura(Sorrel) Chutney/Pachadi

8. Pudhina(Mint leaves) Chutney

9. Mentha (Mint/Puthina) Rice (Microwave cooking)

10. Bottlegourd/Calabash (Sorakkai) curry (Dudhi Bhaaji)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Chicken Gravy - My brother's way;)

I felt too lazy last sunday and wanted to eat out. It was drizzling and my hubby told we will buy-back. So went out and to our disappointment, Briyani got finished earlier than usual :(

Called my brother at home and told him, he said buy chicken, I will prepare. So bought some chicken and went to take rest;)

He prepared chicken gravy for chappathis. It was very tasty and aroma was amazing:)

For me, it will be always taste great, if someone cooks and feed me ;) My hubby said, the masala was better than what I prepare :(

So here goes my brother's recipe......:)

Chicken - 400 gms
Onions - 2, chopped
Tomatoes - 2, chopped
Green Chillies - 3, chopped
Bay leaf - a small piece
Chilli powder - 1 tablespoon (or as spicy required)
Coriander leaves - few, for garnishing
Oil - 2-3 tablespoons
Salt to taste

For Masala paste:
Fennel seeds - 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Ginger - 1 inch long
Garlic - 3-4 cloves
Cardamom - 1
Cloves - 1-2
Cinnamom stick - a small piece
Green chillies - 2, small
Coriander leaves - few

Grind all the masala ingredients without or less water to a fine paste.

Heat oil in a pan. Add bay leaf, onions, green chillies and fry until onions turn golden brown.

Add chopped tomatoes and fry until they are cooked well.

Then add washed chicken, grinded paste, chilli powder, salt to taste and mix well.
Cook it covered until chicken becomes soft.

Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with chappathis or rice.

Cooking time - 20 - 30 minutes
Serves 3 persons


Check out Beautiful array of Rakhis @
RAKHI EVENT Round up in my creations blog.

Also check for this month's
CAN ART Event.

Please do participate!!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

A Fruit A Month - Gooseberry

AFAM - A Fruit A Month was intiated by Maheswari. Happy to host it this month in my blog. I have chosen "Gooseberries" for the event.

Some facts about Gooseberries:

- Native to Europe, northwestern Africa and southwestern Asia
- Fruits are nearly spherical, in light greenish yellow colour.
- Tastes sour, bitter, sweet and
- Tradiontionally used in Ayurvedic medicine.
- Nutritionally good in dietary fiber, Calcium, phosphorus, Iron, Vitamin C and B.
- Indian gooseberries are called as nelli in Sinhala, nellikka in Malayalam, amlakhi in Assamese, usirikai in Telugu, nellikkaai in Tamil as well as aonla, aola, ammalaki, dharty, aamvala, aawallaa, emblic, Emblic myrobalan, Malacca tree, nillika, and nellikya in various other languages. Also known as Stachelbeere (German), Groseille a Maquereaux (French), Uva Spina (Italian), Stekbes (Flemish).
- Its also termed as "Poor man's apple" as it has the qualities equal to an apple. Remember "an apple a day keeps the doctor away", so "a gooseberry a day also keeps the doctor away" .... he he

So start your shopping and cook any dish of Gooseberry and send it to me.

Rules are very simple:

1) Post any recipe(veg or non-veg) which is cooked/prepared using Gooseberry. A link to this annoucement in your post is a MUST and if possible, please add the logo.

2) In case you wish to send some dish that you have posted earlier, please repost it with the link to the event and logo.

3) No restrictions on the number of entries...send in AS MANY AS YOU CAN.

4) Email me with the below details and Subject line as "AFAM", to illatharasi at gmail dot com (illatharasi@gmail.com) before September 30, 2008.

Your name
Dish name
Link to the recipe/post

Roundup would be published during the first week of October.

5) If you are a non-blogger, please email me the recipe and the picture.

Click here for last month's AFAM - Lemon round up!

Looking forward for your recipes...... :-)